Friday, May 20, 2016

Green Bean Salad


When I was younger I loved going to school; when school wasn't in session I played school. In college I took classes every semester they were offered -- spring semester, winter semester, intersession, summer semester.  If classes were offered, I took them, and, in the doing, I built up a pot-load of credit hours. So much so, in fact, that I defied categorization and, eventually, they asked me if I would just graduate and leave. It was with great reluctance that I did, and I felt set adrift when it came time to sign up for coursework again. Not daring to show my face on the university campus, I grabbed a course catalog from the local community college, and signed up for a couple of extension classes, one of which was Gourmet Barbecue.

Looking back, I can't imagine what possessed me to take this class. I was the only young, single female in a class of, largely, forty-year-old men and their wives. As you can imagine, I was quite popular with the men, not so much with their wives. All's well that ends well, however, once they realized I was actually there to learn, and not shopping for a husband. I ended up learning quite a lot about grilling, and came away with a vast array of recipes. In addition to learning specialty grill recipes, we were also provided with side dishes suitable for whatever main dish we were working on that week. One of my favorites was this green bean salad. Mother loved it as well because the two of us were absolutely ga-ga over green beans, liking them so much that we would often eat them right from the can.

This recipe, a product of the late seventies, calls for canned green beans, but it is so much better when using fresh, and even more fun when using a variety of interesting beans as I have done here using both yellow and purple (they turn green when you cook them -- kids love to watch these) wax beans from Melissa’s Produce. Use whatever you like to make this salad colorful and interesting, and in keeping with your family’s tastes. Serve it chilled or at room temperature. It makes a great addition to picnics, barbecues, salad bars, or serves as an excellent side dish.
Green Bean Salad



1 pound fresh string or wax beans, trimmed, blanched, and cooled

1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved

½ red onion, thinly, and I’m talking THINLY, sliced

1/3 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Homemade croutons (or store bought, if you must)

Italian Dressing



Toss together beans, tomatoes, onion, and Parmesan cheese, and refrigerate, covered, for an hour, or up to eight hours. When ready to serve, add croutons and dress with your favorite Italian dressing or vinaigrette.  Personally, I use low fat Italian dressing and love it in this recipe.

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1 comment:

Marigene said...

Yummy, I love beans fixed any way. There is no one around here that grows wax beans...they are a big seller back in New England, where I grew up. I check every farmers market around for them. I think I found them once in the almost 15 years I have lived here and only twice at Whole Foods a couple years ago.
Hope you have a nice peaceful weekend.